Does Acupuncture hurt?
When people think of needles, they don’t always associate them to pleasant sensations. Some people are even very fearful of injections or getting shots. The needles used to administer most injections are a thick hollow needle that briefly hurts when the skin is punctured and fluid pushed into the subcutaneous tissue or into the muscle. These hollow needles are also used to draw blood.
However, acupuncture needles are thin smaller stainless steel needles without a hollow center. They are considered a FDA classified medical instrument and are sterile. They do not carry risk of infection. They are often the size of a cat’s whisker and are flexible. When the acupuncture needle is inserted, it does not hurt like an injection needle does. The sensation is very different and dependent on the way the acupuncturist inserts it. Some people do not feel the insertion at all. Others, may initially feel a small pin prick entering the skin. When the acupuncture needle is inserted into an acupuncture point, the patient feels a light pressure or dull achey sensation. This sensation is associated with the Qi (pronounced CHEE) energy. When the needles for the treatment are entirely placed, the dull ache sensation can change. Over the course of about 15-20 minutes, the dull ache may start to feel tingly and then turn into a flowing type sensation throughout the body.
After an acupuncture treatment, the patient usually feels calmer and more relaxed. Pain does not usually linger. Acupuncture can help as an adjunct to many medical treatments. It can aid with fertility, weight loss, smoking cessation, anxiety, pain, headaches, etc.
For people who can not bear the thought of needles, they may benefit from other forms of acupuncture including; cupping, acupressure, Gua Sha, moxibustion, microcurrent electrical stimulation or magnets.
At Modern Family Medicine, Dr. Elissa B. Gartenberg performs customized medical acupuncture treatments. She evaluates patients from a medical perspective to determine if any other medical work up may be needed to treat the patient’s condition. She offers acupuncture as an adjunct to traditional medical treatments. If you or someone you know would like to try an acupuncture treatment, some insurance plans offer coverage or you can use your (HSA) health savings account to cover the cost. Call (602) 363-1631 to schedule an appointment or go to our website at www.modernfamilymedicine.com and click on the link to schedule an appointment online.